Tonight I force-fed M chocolate frosting.
Chocolate frosting, people. I did so because it was the end of the meal, time for dessert, and M pitched a fit over, well, I don't know what over. I offered him a cupcake, and I think he thought I said cookie, so when I showed him the cupcake, he went ballistic. He pitches epic fits over everything. If I don't unpeel his banana fast enough, or the right way, if the banana cracks in half while he is eating it, if I tell him not to eat the rice cake in the living room, if he can't reach the book he wants, or can't figure out how to climb on the couch, or if he can't go outside to ride the tricycle because it is wet or rainy. Pretty much anything that thwarts his will produces an epic fit of screaming, throwing himself on the floor, kicking, smashing anything in sight, throwing things, throwing food, general violence. You get the idea.
|M the Barbarian|
I want my children to be well-behaved, self-controlled, compassionate human beings who can participate meaningfully in the life of our family. I want them to be able to put aside their own desires and needs (at least temporarily) for the greater good of the family. I know that these are adult sorts of ideals, but I know that the time to shape them is now. I know I can't expect perfection at this age, but I'd to be able to at least expect reasonable behavior some of the time. Most of the time I feel I am dealing with a complete barbarian who not only speaks a language nearly incomprehensible to me, but his customs, culture, and ideas are foreign as well. I don't understand how to help him assimilate. His great sucking need for me and my husband's attention and time, to the exclusion of all the other members of the family, is difficult to deal with on many different levels.
The bright side of this whole thing is that E has gotten much easier in the last few weeks, and isn't screaming in tandem with M. She still goes crazy several times during the day, gets up a lot at night, and remains needy in the way that babies under age one are, but she seems more content with life. The general chaos level comes down a notch when she is content, even if M is not. As long as we can keep her healthy, that is. But that is another topic for another day.
I wish I could write that I have learned some big lesson, or have a nugget of wisdom to pass along, but honestly, I've gotten nothing. Nada. Zip. Zero. Just the hope that things will improve some time soon.